The incidence of breast cancer in women is increasing rapidly across the region, but those same patients are living longer lives agree Middle East-based doctors who met in Paris at the 2nd Middle East and Africa Oncology Summit.
The good news though, say doctors from Abu Dhabi’s Tawam Hospital, is that breast cancer cases are being caught much earlier, a critical factor in successful treatment of the chronic disease.
Prevention, early diagnosis, and proper treatment are the only ways to bring down breast cancer statistics in the UAE. But for post-menopausal women, not all current treatments are safe and effective.
For many years, adjuvant Tamoxifen has been the ‘gold standard’ for endocrine therapy in early breast cancer. In recent trials, however, third generation aromatase inhibitors, such as Letrozole, have been shown to be more effective than Tamoxifen in advanced disease, neoadjuvant therapy, and adjuvant therapy.
“Endocrine therapy, such as Letrozole, remains a very powerful approach to treating breast cancer in post-menopausal women, and with very low levels of toxicity,” said Dr. Ian Smith, Professor of Cancer Medicine at the Royal Marsden Hospital and Institute of Cancer Research in London, who spoke with regional doctors at the Paris summit.